Nova Scotia photo supply company is taking stand against Donald Trump
'If you shop Canadian, we're not really going to worry what's going on south of the border.'
A Nova Scotia company is standing up to U.S. President Donald Trump.
Atlantic Photo Supply won't offer its customers exchange on U.S. currency anymore, due to recent tariffs imposed on Canada by the U.S. Canada has responded with some retaliatory tariffs on U.S. goods.
Allen Sutherland, who runs the business, said the trade spat could affect the company because some of the products he sells he can only obtain in the U.S.
Outside of the company's store in Dartmouth, a sign reads 'Forget Trump, Shop Canadian.' He wants the sign to encourage people to shop Canadian as often as possible.
"If you shop Canadian, we're not really going to worry what's going on south of the border," he said.
In March, Trump announced a 25 per cent tariff on steel imports and a 10 per cent tariff on aluminum imports.
Canada has been watching the developments in the U.S. because it is the top seller of both steel and aluminum to the world's largest economy.
The U.S. imported 26.9 million tonnes of steel in 2017 with 16 per cent coming from Canada.
Sutherland said despite the fact buying Canadian can be difficult because international trade is so integrated, he thinks it is possible.
"It definitely is tough, but if people are making the choices to purchase something they may [consider buying] Canadian first."
He said that the reaction to his sign has been mixed, especially over social media where the company received a few "unflattering comments."
One person even entered the store to offer a pro-Trump opinion. Sutherland said he supports the right to hold a point of view, even if it differs from his own.
If an American tourist comes into the store, Sutherland said it will only accept U.S. currency at par.
He said he doesn't know if the sign will have an impact on the business itself, but said maybe it will have impacts on the choices of consumers.
"I would call it like a ripple effect, you know — when something happens, something else starts to happen — and you may see a greater movement of 'buy Canadian,'" he said. "I think it would benefit not just our business but I think Canadian business in general."
Though he does admit he doesn't think a local movement would have much impact on the policy direction of the U.S. government, he said this could have impacts on the Canadian government's position.
"It's not even about [party politics], we're supporting the Canadian economy, the Canadian businesses and, in turn, we're also supporting the Canadian government."
Sutherland said he is attempting to find as many Canadian suppliers for his products as he can.
With files from Tom Murphy